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Setting a foundation for the arts

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One of five instructors at Studio Art House shares her knowledge of art with a student during one of the classes. (Photos by Dawn Cobb)
One of five instructors at Studio Art House shares her knowledge of art with a student during one of the classes. (Photos by Dawn Cobb)

Helping artists build fine motor skills, develop their aptitude in the fine arts and expose them to the world of art is the focus behind Studio Art House in Flower Mound.

Situated at 2608 Long Prairie Road in Suite 205, Studio Art House walls are filled with paintings from both students and instructors as small groups gather around circular tables learning brush techniques and how to blend the background sky or add depth to the painting.

The heads of young artists are bowed as they studiously paint, each intent on perfecting their own techniques.

Sculpting, charcoals, oils, acrylics and water colors are but of a few of the mediums taught in the classes designed to help each student grow in the world of fine arts, says owner Anita Kim Robbins, a longtime artist who teaches with four other instructors – each bringing a wealth of experience to the studio. Among the teachers is a book illustrator, a court reporter, an illustrator, a professional cartoonist and an art teacher. Each brings their own unique skill sets to the classes for ages from elementary to high school to adults to those with special needs.

“They are really amazing teachers,” she said.

Each class is designed to be small in size to allow individualized instruction, Robbins said. “We’re helping them with their strengths at their levels.”

Each student has their own brushes, pencils and other tools used to create their artwork. Each student also receives a workbook complete with step-by-step instructions to complete drawing assignments for homework. The idea, Robbins said, is to lay the groundwork for each reaching the next level of expertise.

Anita Kim Robbins, at right, bought Studio Art House three years ago and has developed art education curriculum for all ages.
Anita Kim Robbins, at right, bought Studio Art House three years ago and has developed art education curriculum for all ages.

Assignments even include drawing a subject upside down, which helps students focus and develop concentration.

“We’re in the self-esteem business,” Robbins said, adding that as students complete projects, they gain self confidence in their skills. “We make it a very positive experience.”

Robbins bought the business three years ago, developing her own curriculum with the help of the other instructors. One instructor has taught at Studio Art House for 10 years.

In addition to classes, Studio Art House also helps teen artists develop their portfolios for university level entrance as well as a wide assortment of summer camps dedicated to teaching students how to develop their crafts.  Details about the classes, camps and information about parties with an art theme can be found at www.studioarthouse.com. Studio Art House also has a second location in Southlake.

With the hands-on, detailed instruction, students at Studio Art House have gone on to win a number of awards, including Best of Show at the State Fair. The students’ achievements are noted in a newsletter sent to parents.

A student works to perfect her own techniques during art classes at Studio Art House.
A student works to perfect her own techniques during art classes at Studio Art House.

“We are all about classical training,” Robbins said. “We go back to fundamental drawing skills and the basics because it gives them a foundation. Imagination needs information from which to build on.”

“It gives you a new understanding about genres of art you never think about,” said Luke Dodson, 11.
Maurya Doddala, 11, who has been going to Studio Art House for two years, said she likes the specific details offered through her training. “When I draw, I want to make my drawings look good,” she said.
An education in fine arts is applicable to many aspects of daily life, Robbins said, and is something parents should keep in mind.

“Almost everything has been touched by design,” she said referring to clothing, cars, buildings and more. “Almost everyone has a creative artist on staff. … You have to think out of the box.”

 

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